Community-based interventions targeting behaviour change towards the practice of FGM in Burkina Faso and Sudan

Team members: 
Els Leye; Soetkin Bauwens; Marleen Temmerman; Amel Fahmy; Elise Johansen; Patricia Claeys
Team members: 
Els Leye; Soetkin Bauwens; Marleen Temmerman; Amel Fahmy; Elise Johansen; Patricia Claeys


Main objective

  • To contribute to the global effort towards the abandonment of FGM and, in addition, to generate a behaviour change process in the intervention communities in Burkina Faso and Sudan

Specific objectives

  • To identify successful determinants in designing, implementing, monitoring and evaluating best practices on FGM and to develop guidelines for these practices
  • To develop and test an adapted intervention based on existing community-based interventions and derived from a theoretical model
  • To create a social mobilization process in the intervention communities in Burkina Faso and Sudan
  • To generate a sustained momentum towards behaviour change with regard to FGM in the intervention communities.


  • Participatory approach 
  • Situation analysis prior to the design of the intervention to assess the socio-cultural context of the intervention community and to better plan, implement, monitor and evaluate the intervention
  • Integrated approach within a broader programme of community empowerment to improve sustainability of the intervention, to increase the benefits for the community.
  • Determination of a suitable theoretical framework to provide legitimacy to the approach used and to better assess stages of behaviour change
  • Introduction of FGM as part of a broader programme and to pay careful attention to strategies to enter the community
  • Social mobilization activities in the communities as part of the intervention
  • Creation of monitoring bodies at grassroots level to ensure community ownership and maintain sustainability
  • Baseline and endline measurement


PHASE I: Preparatory phase (6 months)

  • Activity 1: Selection of local partner and FGM team, orientation workshop and memorandum of understanding (two months)
  • Activity 2: Collection and/or development of training material and IEC materials (two months)
  • Activity 3: Situation analysis (one month)
  • Activity 4: Planning meeting (one month)
  • Activity 5: Training workshop on study methodology (one month)

PHASE II: Intervention phase (12 months)

  • Activity 6: Raising awareness/positive deviants/intergenerational dialogue/community mobilisation
     Raising awareness activities to break the silence surrounding the topic of FGM; to create a supporting environment with regard to the activities of the programme; to create a wide base of community awareness on the issues surrounding the practice of FGM.
     Identifying positive deviants and integrating them in the programme as agents of change
     Intergenerational dialogue to create an enabling environment to discuss taboo and sensitive subjects such as sexuality, gender roles, FGM, etc.
     Community mobilization to create a critical mass of people who can decide to abandon the practice of FGM.
  • Activity 7: Closing workshop (one month)

PHASE III: Dissemination phase (5 months)

  • Activity 8: Evaluation of the intervention (two months)
    A set of qualitative and quantitative indicators will be developed to monitor the implemented activities (process indicators) and to assess outputs of the project (baseline/endline indicators).
  • Activity 9: Development of guidelines (one month)
    The outcome of the intervention study will result in the development of guidelines for the design, implementation, monitoring and evaluation of future FGM community-based interventions, including cost and human resources estimates.
  • Activity 10: Dissemination seminars (two months)
    The results of the intervention will be communicated to the intervention communities during a local seminar in each community.


  • Creation of a social mobilization process towards behaviour change with regard to abandoning FGM in the intervention communities
  • Contribution to the progressive abandonment of the practice. 
  • Guidelines for policymakers and others on how to address the changing nature of FGM and how to adapt an intervention to a specific or different setting.
Project categories: 
Funding agencies: 
World Health Organisation, Switzerland (project coordinator) International Centre for Reproductive Health (project partner) Mwangaza Action, Burkina Faso (local principal investigator) Ahfad University for Women, Sudan (local principal investigator)
Project status: 
Project status: 
01/01/2004 - 31/12/2008
01/01/2004 - 31/12/2008
Ends on: 
Friday, November 23, 2012
Ends on: 
Thursday, January 1, 2004
Ends on: 
Thursday, January 1, 2004